By Kingsley Omonobi
In the aftermath of a visible threat by personnel of the Nigeria Police Force to embark on strike over non-implementation of new salary structure approved for them by the Federal Government and denial by Force Headquarters of such a plan, the Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba, has ordered the immediate commencement of financial computation and adjustments of Police emoluments in line with the new salary structure.
A wireless message, dated March 15, 2022, with reference number, CB:4001/DOPS/FHQ/ABJ/Vol, said heads of departments and state commissioners of police were told to sensitise their officers on why they should not try to go on strike as steps had been taken to address the issue.
The signal read: “Intelligence reports available to the Inspector General of Police indicate that some members of the rank and file are intending to embark on strike over non-payment of the new Police salary structure, and failure in providing sophisticated weapons to fight crime and poor general welfare of policemen.
“Note that Inspector General of Police has directed the immediate computation of salary, under the new salary structure, tax relief/exemption for officers and men for immediate implementation.
“Distribution of kits and other accoutrements have been initiated with Force Headquarters already concluded.”
It would be recalled that the Force Headquarters, while earlier denying insinuations that personnel of the Nigeria Police Force were planning to embark on strike over non-implementation of the new salary package, warned that any strike or disruption of law enforcement services would be treated as mutiny.
Deputy Force Public Relation Officer, CSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, had said: “The attention of the Nigeria Police Force has been drawn to a news making the rounds on social media alleging that some members of the Force will be embarking on a strike action with effect from March 26, 2022.
“The Nigeria Police Force wishes to state unequivocally that the alleged publication is fake and a mischievous attempt by unscrupulous individuals to bring the Force to disrepute, misinform the general public and heat up the polity.
“It is pertinent to restate that the Nigeria Police Force is a regimented and disciplined organization with laid down rules and guidelines for addressing grievances and in no circumstance is a strike action one of such means.
“The men and women of the Nigeria Police Force are fully aware that a strike action or other deliberate disruption of law enforcement services by any security organization is mutinous and the personnel of the Force would not degenerate at any point to that level of disloyalty and indiscipline, as policing services are paramount and essential in the maintenance of orderliness and peace in the nation.
“It is pertinent to emphasize that the IGP is accelerating efforts to ensure the full implementation of the increment of salaries and allowances proposed by the President and approved by the Federal Executive Council.
“It is important to accentuate that it was the President’s initiative without any demand from the Police to direct the process of increasing salaries and allowances.
“The Federal Government is, therefore, fully committed to the implementation of the new salary package.
“Since that approval, the Salaries and Wages Commission has issued an implementation circular, the Minister of Police Affairs and the IGP have been working with the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, to ensure the stoppage of tax deductions as directed by the President and approved by the Federal Executive Council, FEC.’’
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